Erin Gray influenced a generation of adolescents during the late 1970s with her role as “Colonel Wilma Deering” in the TV series “Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.” Gray is also remembered for her role as Kate Summers from the 1982 TV series “Silver Spoons” starring then 12-year-old Ricky Schroeder. Gray was in town Nov. 14-15 to attend the Gulf Coast Film and Video Festival. Gray’s body of work was acknowledged with the Cascade Life Time Achievement Award.
“I feel very honored,” Gray said. “It’s lovely to be acknowledged for my work.”
Hal Wixon, founding director of the Gulf Coast Film and Video Festival, describes Gray as very dedicated to her profession, very attractive and funny with a good sense of humor.
“Erin Gray won the award because she deserves it,” Wixon said. “She works consistently and has given a lot to modern television and film. We feel she is very deserving.”
“My men wear English Leather – or they wear nothing at all,” was a provocative slogan made famous by Gray in her early years of modeling for the cologne commercial.
Gray began her modeling career when she was 15; after that she became part of many projects.
One of her favorite memories from “Buck Rogers” was that she influenced young men and women. “You are the reason I become a firefighter” and “You helped me discover my true sexuality” are comments Gray has received by her fans in the street.
While visiting her husband on the set of the TV show “Friends” Matt Leblanc (Joey) told Gray that he and his mother would get together and watch her on “Buck Rogers.” He would watch the show to see “Colonel Wilma Deering” and his mother would watch it to see “Captain William ‘Buck’ Rogers” played by Gil Gerald.
Gray said she also enjoyed her role as Kate Summers in the series “Silver Spoons.” She said the show brought families together and that every episode had a message.
“Silver Spoons gave me a chance to be a mother and an actress,” Gray said. “The perfect life — to act and being a mom.”
Gray’s latest projects include the yet-to-be released feature films “Dreams Awake” and “Hunter Pray.”
In addition to acting, Gray is also a business woman, author and Tai Chi master. Haven House is the oldest battered woman’s shelter and Gray’s favorite charity. She is a board member of the charity. Gray has her own company, Heroes for Hire, that books celebrities for TV show conventions.
Her book “Act Right” gives advice to young actors on how to relate to a scene crew, be professional on sets and much more. Gray is also a Tai Chi master and would like to do an instructional DVD on Tai Chi.
For more information on the Gulf Coast Film and Video Festival, visit www.gulfcoastfilmfest.com. For more information on Erin Gray visit her Web site at www.eringray.com.
---The Signal • 2700
Bay Area Blvd • Houston, TX 77058 • (281) 283-2570 • Contact The Signal